Longer days, hotter temperatures, more time to spend at the beach – summer is just around the corner! As we shake off our winter hibernation and rejoice that we can finally enjoy spending some time outside in our beautiful gardens, it’s important to start giving them the TLC they need now, so that it can stay hydrated and continue to flourish over summer.
Here’s our top five tips to keeping your garden healthy over summer:
1) Choose waterwise plants
By choosing plants that are suited to the climatic factors around you (such as sunlight, heat and water requirements), you will be able to create a garden that will look good throughout the summer – a season that can be quite harsh on not suited plants.
Think about Succulents, Kangaroo Paws and Rosemary – these plants thrive throughout the summer as they are best suited to hot over head sun exposure.
The Water Corporation have a handy little waterwise plant search that’ll show you what plants are best suited to the suburb you live in. Check it out here.
2) Work the soil
The more time, money and effort you put into improving the soil before planting will ensure that your plants will look better for longer, due to the increased nutrients and water supply. The majority of Perth is built on sand, which due to the lack of structure and large air pockets between particles, looses water very quickly. You can improve the structure by adding natural products such as bentonite clay and sheep’s manure or using a ready-made soil improver which you can find at your local gardening store.
3) Update your retic system and irrigation to suit the area
Due to our warming climate and increasing water restrictions, reticulation systems have progressed lot in the last 10 years and have been designed to make the most efficient use of your water.
Choose irrigation that suits the area e.g. Drip irrigation for garden beds reduces evaporation rate that sprayers have, as the water is being directed exactly where it is needed. However, drip irrigation isn’t going to work for trees, as bubbles would be better for these.
4) Schedule your retic for optimal absorption
In accordance to The Water Corporation guidelines, reticulation can only be used before 9am or after 6pm on your allocated water days. Early mornings or late evenings is the best time to schedule your retic for, as the cooler temperatures will reduce the evaporation rate and avoid scolding the leaves.
5) Give your garden a helping hand
Due to the drainage in pots, they loose water quicker, which can affect the plants, veggies or herbs that you’re growing within them. To help your pots and plants retain water for longer, use products such as water saving crystals or soil wetter, which will help by absorbing water, and then re-releasing back into the soil it slowly over time as required.